Tissuelike 3D Assemblies of Human Broncho-Epithelial Cells
Experimental conditions are more realistic than those of 2D monolayer cell cultures.
Three-dimensional (3D) tissuelike assemblies (TLAs) of human bronchoepithelial (HBE) cells have been developed for use in in vitro research on infection of humans by respiratory viruses. The 2D monolayer HBE cell cultures heretofore used in such research lack the complex cell structures and interactions characteristic of in vivo tissues and, consequently, do not adequately emulate the infection dynamics of in-vivo microbial adhesion and invasion. In contrast, the 3D HBE TLAs are characterized by more-realistic reproductions of the geometrical and functional complexity, differentiation of cells, cell-to-cell interactions, and cell-to-matrix interactions characteristic of human respiratory epithelia. Hence, the 3D HBE TLAs are expected to make it possible to perform at least some of the research in vitro under more-realistic conditions, without need to infect human subjects.